Read of the Week

The Charmed Life of Alex Moore
Molly Flatt
Pan Macmillan
Review: Chantel Erfort

On the one day I found myself alone over the festive period, I actually wasn’t alone at all, having spent the day in the company of the characters created to inhabit the wonderful world that comes to life in this book.

In her debut offering, author Molly Flatt breathes life into totally relatable and likeable characters, although I admit I had to go back and forth a couple of times to remind myself exactly who each character was.

The protagonist, Alex Moore explodes into the story as a high-flying member of the up-and-coming high-tech mod squad. 

At the age of 31, she is a successful “it girl” heading a tech start-up whose star is on the rise. 

The irony is, that despite the numerous explanations in the story of what this start-up actually does, I still don’t quite understand – and by admission, neither do many of the characters in the book either. 

I suspect that Flatt, a journalist specialising in the tech world herself, wrote it this way to reflect the often vague and intangible way many tech innovations are described.

Just six months ago, however, Alex’s life was not so exciting, and she wasn’t anywhere close to the kind of success she is currently enjoying.

And it is the recent turn-around in her life and a rise that can be described as nothing short of meteoric, which is at the core of The Charmed Life of Alex Moore.

Despite her professional success, Alex’s personal relationships are suffering and she feels the acute absence of something very significant in her life.
It is during a trip to the Orkney Islands off the coast of Scotland, where she has been summoned to participate in a research project, that the story takes a dramatic and unexpected twist. It is also here that the reasons for Alex’s feelings of emptiness and the cause of her emotional “episodes” start to be revealed.

Flatt’s writing is simple and easy to read, more than likely the result of working as a journalist, and her descriptions, crisp and vivid.

The Charming Life of Alex Moore was a fun and gripping read, with a “that’s life, reality bites” kind of ending, which I really appreciated.

It’s one of the few books I’ve read whose tagline pretty much sums up the story: “She has it all … until she loses it”. But it doesn’t matter, because it’s what happens in between that’s the really exciting stuff.